Florida Basketball Caps Off Undefeated Conference Season in Impressive Fashion
A perfect season is what every team in any sport strives for, and while the Florida Gators stumbled in early non-conference games, the team has not faltered since. With the win Saturday, the Gators set a historic record in the SEC completing the conference’s first undefeated regular season by going 18-0. Many will try to put a pessimistic spin on the impressive feat because of the SEC’s conference strength, but winning every conference game is a struggle due to familiarity with the opponents and the possibility of a letdown game.
Florida capped off its undefeated conference season by beating the Kentucky Wildcats 84-65 in a game that never figured to be close. The Gators took command of the game from the tip and never looked back going into the break up 49-28. Patric Young thrived in the spotlight of senior day scoring 18 points and grabbing seven rebounds as the Gators threw down the gauntlet in Gainesville. Scottie Wilbekin and Casey Prather also had solid performances in the win combining for 28 points, six rebounds and six assists. The Gators represent what “team ball” really is as they recorded 20 assists yet again.
The Gators’ win over the one-and-done factory illustrates how experience is a key component in success in the world of college basketball, and how team chemistry stacks up against several great players on a team that has not had time to mesh. Florida is not necessarily a deep team, but the Gators are one of the most unselfish teams in America by not caring who gets the accolades as long as the team gets the W.
While Florida does not have the star caliber players other programs have this season, the Gators are the most complete team in the country. It will be interesting to see how this longtime debate of player vs. team unfolds in the NCAA tournament as the Gators look for the team’s first title in almost a decade.
Greg Douglas is a College Basketball writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on twitter @thegpd93 or add him to your Google Network.